Advertising

“Too advanced”: Ski resort wins social praise after turning one-star review into an advertising campaign

Martin Kovacs /

Hope springs eternal for businesses living in fear of bad customer reviews affecting their livelihood, as demonstrated by a new ad campaign launched by a US ski resort.

The Snowbird resort in Utah has generated social media buzz by using a negative one-star customer review to promote its “too advanced” offering.

The review, attributed to Greg from Los Angeles, CA, reads:

“I’ve heard Snowbird is a tough mountain, but this is ridiculous. It felt like every trail was a steep chute or littered with tree wells. How is anyone supposed to ride in that? Not fun!”

The ad has yielded hundreds of Facebook comments and thousands of likes, with Snowbird noting, “Greg thought we were ‘Too Advanced’”. This, the resort adds, is why its core guests “come back year after year”.

Greg thought we were "Too Advanced", for our core guest it's why they come back year after year.Introducing the Snowbird ★☆☆☆☆ campaign.

Posted by Snowbird on Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Snowbird is far from the first business to enter the negative review territory for advertising gain.

The approach echoes other similar-styled marketing techniques employed by celebrity chef and dessert entrepreneur Adriano Zumbo and English cafe Nook Neighbourhood Coffee.

Writing at Medium, Ryan Coons, a copywriter at Struck, the agency behind the campaign, has taken the concept one step further.

“The first ad in our new campaign for Snowbird resort hit newsstands on Monday in Ski Utah magazine,” Coons explained last week.

“By Tuesday night it was the top post on Reddit. Safe to say we’re a hit with 20-year-old males (and the 20-year-old males at heart). But not everyone is a fan.”

Coons then proceeds to list the agency’s favourite one-star reviews of the “One-Star Review” campaign.

“It doesn’t even look like it was ever actually a print ad,” said one Reddit user.”

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Martin Kovacs

Martin Kovacs is a journalist with experience covering the IT, consumer electronics, retail, finance and energy sectors.

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